It's as real as gravity. So say the billions of people on the planet who accept the Law of Attraction as universal truth. It just IS, so accept its IS-ness, learn its rules. If you can do that, you hold the power to have, be, and do whatever you want.
So they say.
And then there's the flip-side, which goes a little something like this:
As was true for many, my introduction to the New Age came in the mid-2000's. I read all the books. I saw "The Secret" as many times as I saw "Rattle & Hum" in college. I wrote the lists, created the vision boards, said the affirmations ad nauseum. In short, I worked the program. Hard. And in turn, it worked for me. No doubt about it...getting myself in line with the LOA got me results.
But then...I got tired.
I just couldn't fake it 'til I maked it anymore. I could no longer stand feeling like a failure every time a negative thought slipped through, every time a hint of doubt crept in. It was a scary and unsettled time in my life, and I simply ran out of energy for denying, ignoring, and discounting the fear. There were decisions to be made, directions to choose, and my overblown sense of responsibility was having a heyday with the idea that it was all up to me. I had attached myself to a "vision" of what I wanted when I had no idea what I wanted. And eventually, the incline of the uphill battle to remain committed to that idea, and to stay consistently and impeccably positive, got the best of me. I gave up and, in the giving up, realized the extent to which I'd marginalized God. He was in the picture, but barely.
Here's the problem: the Law of Attraction leaves very little leeway for being human. And if I can't be human, how can I have a real relationship with the One who made me human? I can't, because I'm too busy trying to CONTROL every damn thing. And when I'm not doing that, I'm JUDGING myself for not being able to CONTROL every damn thing.
Do I believe in the Law of Attraction? Yes. With as much conviction as I believe in the Law of Gravity. But I think there's another Law at work, one that hasn't gotten the air time it deserves. A Law that, through much on-going trial and error, informs my understanding of how to work with the Law of Attraction while keeping God center stage.
I call it the Law of Authenticity and it says:
1. In order to authentically experience the God moments, I have to be willing to authentically experience the human moments.
2. There is no good or bad, no right or wrong when it comes to feelings.
3. What's real is what's right. What's true is Truth.
4. God gave me an entire palette of feelings for a reason, and each and every one of them holds the possibility of deepening my relationship with Him, cultivating my trust in Him.
5. Feelings show up with the kind of information I can't get from thinking. Owning them and allowing them clears the airwaves for a download from above.
I don't know about you, but my "negative" feelings don't take kindly to the notion that they can and should be changed through sheer force of will. In fact, it rather pisses them off, impels them to get louder. The mind is powerful, and yes, with some effort, and to some extent, I can change what I feel by focusing on something positive, envisioning what I want, affirming loudly, donning the proverbial "attitude of gratitude" like one of those decorative scarves that looks pretty but does nothing to block the icy wind.
But what if those difficult, pesky feeling are trying to tell me something?
What if what I think I want is not really what I want, and the discomfort is trying to help me see that I'm trying to fit myself into an idea of my life that's not right for me?
What if God is trying to get my attention in order to point me in a different direction?
God and the Law of Authenticity give substance to the Law of Attraction, making it more powerful, more meaningful, more grounded. Big and small challenges, frustrations, and irritations happen. Daily. Plans get derailed, my life intersects with the lives of other imperfect humans, I waste energy comparing myself to those same imperfect humans. Disappointment ensues. Without God, the New Age damage control methods only served to reinforce a destructive pattern of self-judgment that made letting go impossible, acceptance out of the question, and yes a foreign concept.
My human moments are not always pretty, not always comfortable, not always fun. But they are always simultaneously God moments. Even when I can't feel Him, or I'm mad at Him, or I'm so disconnected I'm not even sure I believe in Him, my human self cannot go anywhere He is not. Instead of worrying that those moments are going to derail the vision I have for my life, or for my day, I'm learning to let the One who holds the big picture give me that vision, and to see the big and small challenges along the way as the course corrections they are.
Being human means constantly expanding my capacity for truth in every direction. It's no secret that God is in the truth, and from that foundation everything is possible.
So pass it on.
I don't have to go out on much of a limb to guess that you've had some experience with the LOA, and I would love to hear about it! What would your made-up Law be called?